Ellen G. White: The Later Elmshaven Years: 1905-1915 (vol. 6)


Healdsburg College

One time-consuming matter into which Ellen White was drawn and in which she would be involved over a period of nearly two years was the moving of Healdsburg College to a location more favorable to its welfare and success. The town had grown about the college. Enrollment in 1908 was down—in grades nine and upward it was 125. The faculty consisted of fourteen teachers (Pacific Union Recorder, February 13, 1908). Finances were in serious condition. At a meeting of the Pacific Educational Association held at the college on March 19, action was taken that because of adverse circumstances the college should be moved to a suitable location in the country. It was hoped that a property with buildings suited to school purposes could be found in the price range of from $15,000 to $25,000, and the plan was that no debts would be incurred (Ibid., April 2, 1908). Ellen White would soon be involved in the search for a suitable location. 6BIO 167.4

Mid-April, with its warming spring weather, seemed to offer a good time to make a long-anticipated trip into Lake County, just to the north. There, fifty-two miles from Elmshaven, lived the Hurlbutts, who were involved in operating an orphanage with money Mrs. Hurlbutt inherited from her mother, and she sought Sister White's counsel. Ellen White felt she needed a break from the steady grind ever with her of preparing materials for print. 6BIO 167.5

The way to the Hurlbutt home was over tortuous mountain roads. Sunday morning, April 19, at four-thirty, the party left Elmshaven with Ellen White and Willie riding in a comfortable one-seated buggy behind a large bay horse borrowed for the trip. The rest of the party—Sara McEnterfer, Iram James, and Professor E. A. Sutherland from the Madison school—traveled in a platform spring wagon drawn by the two young, gray workhorses. At five-thirty they passed through Calistoga, nine miles north, and were soon climbing Mount St. Helena on a “mountain road that was very steep and narrow.” “The air,” wrote Ellen White, “was bracing, and made fragrant by the budding pines and hemlocks and wildflowers.”—Letter 122, 1908. 6BIO 168.1

At nine o'clock they stopped by a beautiful brook for breakfast. A tablecloth over a blanket on the ground served as the breakfast table. There was an hour's rest, and then they pressed on through Middletown, stopping again at two o'clock to eat and rest. Then it was on north to Kelseyville and the Hurlbutt place, two miles beyond. They were glad to make the journey in one day, but were prepared to stop at a hotel if the trip seemed a little too much for Sister White (Letter 124, 1908). 6BIO 168.2

Monday and Tuesday morning were spent with Mrs. Hurlbutt, seeing the orphanage and certain properties in which their hosts were interested. Tuesday afternoon they started back, spending the night at a hotel in Middletown. 6BIO 168.3